LAKEWOOD, Wash. — Lewis & Clark Pioneers' senior Charlotte Copp was named to the All-Northwest Conference team as the Pios finished fourth overall at the NWC Championships at American Lake on Sunday morning.
The Pioneers took third place in their only race of the day, the women's varsity eight, as white-capping water cancelled the varsity four. Lewis & Clark raced to a 8:35.2 result in the varsity eight.
"Finished really strong," said Copp. "Very happy with the overall race. Couldn't have asked for a better race with these conditions."
"You need to make sure you're sending through nice and clean," said junior Natalie Stroud about the adjustments the team needed to make because of the conditions. "Balance is a big aspect about it. You really can't do much. We handled it well and we stayed calm. I'm proud of that piece. We did the best we could do with the conditions."
The Pioneers finished ahead of Mills (8:50.4) and Pacific (9:43.3), but without a second varsity eight boat, Lewis & Clark finished behind Mills in the overall standings, which is based on points earned in both races.
"I was very pleased to see our eight have a good race and complete well against two top-ten-ranked crews," said Lewis & Clark head coach Sam Taylor. "The gaps were exaggerated by the headwind."
Pacific Lutheran, which won the overall title, and Puget Sound took the first two spots in the varsity eight. The headwind was noted in the results at 10-15 miles per hours, which created "one-foot swells at start line and significant chop."
With the varsity four race cancelled in addition to the entire regular-season event of the year as well, Taylor and the team are eager to compete at the Western Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championships this upcoming weekend.
"We're looking forward to WIRA to see our whole team in action against lots of quality competition," said Taylor. In addition to the varsity eight, the four and pair are expected to compete.
"We were not necessarily looking to win because we were coming up against tough competitors," said Stroud about Sunday. "We were looking for good piece, the send and the speed. We're looking forward to next week in California against these same crews."
Taylor noted Copp's hard work in earning the team's only All-NWC selection this year.
"She's put in tons of work this year," said Taylor. "PRed at both 5K and 2K and is stroking our 1V8. Like most of the seniors on our team, she's shown great commitment and passion for this program and we're going to miss her." Copp joins Natalie Cerda, Ashley Garber, Kendall Graham and Ryan LaVigne as the team's seniors.
"Over the past several years, I've had a different focus on what each season is about, and this year, it's really about the team and making sure we've got the strength of each person and make the gains we want to make," said Copp. "I've been working incredibly hard on making my goals which will help the team."
"They're great," said Stroud of the senior class. "We couldn't ask for a better group. They have experience and they've got strength."
The WIRA Championships start on Saturday at Lake Natoma in Rancho Cordova, Calif.
The Lewis & Clark men's team won the final event of the day, the varsity four, during a scrimmage with Puget Sound and Pacific Lutheran.
In a time of 8:05.8, the Pios beat out Puget Sound by about three seconds.
"Men's V4 won a close race against Puget Sound, holding them off by just a couple seconds as they closed hard in the last few strokes," said Taylor.
In the novice four, the Pios A boat placed second followed by the B boat.
With a time of 7:49.7, the varsity eight placed third in the Rainier Cup, which Puget Sound won.